Scottish Borders Equally Safe Strategy

We asked

For comments and recommendations about the draft Scottish Borders Equally Safe Strategy to Prevent and Eradicate Violence against Women and Girls (2016-21).

During development of the draft strategy, a total of 2 workshops were held with the Violence against Women Partnership to agree the priorities for the Strategy.

  • A set of questions were developed to help direct feedback on the Strategy, these were then developed into an online questionnaire.
  • 16 responses via the online questionnaire and direct engagement with survivors were received. 
  • The 12 week consultation took place between July and September 2016.

You said

Violence against women and girls fails to acknowledge the experience of boys, children in general, and as such, this Strategy fails to take action to protect boys from abuse.

We did

We adopted the revised Equally Safe Strategy issued by the Scottish Government, addressing the experience of children which includes boys. The Scottish Borders Equally Safe Strategy when referring to girls takes into account the need for support and protection of all children.

You said

Prevention work needs to be more prominent, and that currently prevention work is delivered in secondary schools.

We did

We changed the Equally Safe Delivery Plan to reflect current activity in secondary schools, and will remain committed to working in partnership to ensure that adequate prevention work is considered for all education settings.

You said

Commitment to Equally Safe by statutory partners (e.g. Scottish Borders Council, NHS Borders, and Police Scotland) would strengthen its delivery.

We did

Scottish Borders Equally Safe will be governed at strategic level by the Community Planning Partnership which includes membership of all statutory partners and will ensure  necessary support is provided. At operational level the VAW Partnership will remain a balanced partnership between the voluntary and statutory sector, enabling a broader range of resources available to progress the key priorities annually.

You said

Equally Safe needs to be linked to the other strategies and policies in the Scottish Borders.

We did

We amended Equally Safe to pictorially represent the links between Equally Safe and other strategies, thus demonstrating the cross cutting nature of gender based violence.

You said

The response to perpetrators needs strengthened.

We did

Equally Safe Priority 4 directs us to ensure that the response to perpetrators is robust and sustainable, our partners in the Caledonian System will continue to deliver this programme, and be supported by Equally Safe to ensure its sustainability.

You said

The commitment to the delivery of Equally Safe is unclear in the document.

We did

An agreed Equally Safe Delivery Plan will direct resources and those partner agencies who have agreed to lead on the actions. Progress will be monitored by the VAW Executive Group, and delivered by the VAW Operational Group. The commitment by partner agencies is clearly demonstrated by the Delivery Plan, which will be circulated to stakeholders once finalised.

You said

We would want to celebrate positive achievements in tackling gender based violence.

We did

Achievements will be highlighted in an Annual Report that all partners will contribute to. This will be based on the agreed annual priorities from the Delivery Plan, and will be published in June each year.

Final Scottish Borders Equally Safe Strategy

The final Scottish Borders Equally Safe strategy and resulting delivery plan were developed, taking all comments and recommendations into account. The final strategy will be launched on the International Day of the Elimination of Violence against Women, November 25 2016.